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Virginia Hamilton

Senior Fellow

Virginia Hamilton is a Senior Fellow at the Burnes Center for Social Change and the GovLab, supporting InnovateUS.  She has spent her career focused on making government work better for vulnerable populations, focused on skills, employment, and training.

A public policy expert with deep knowledge of both content and process skills, Virginia utilizes and teaches design thinking – human centered design – to improve public policy and program design. She is an expert in designing meetings and events, and facilitating participatory methods to increase engagement and outcomes. 

She has worked in the public and nonprofit sectors focused on helping government programs work better for people who need them. At the U.S. Department of Labor (DOL), she worked for the Secretary of Labor’s office on issues of employee engagement and innovation. She worked with leaders in a wide array of organizations to teach them how to collaborate, build partnerships, have important conversations, send the right messages, and get things done. At DOL, she spearheaded the Customer-Centered Design Initiative, which trained over 2,000 workforce development professionals in design thinking, and has worked with IDEO, focused on using design thinking to help the unemployed have better customer experiences and better outcomes.

With the Partnership for Public Service, Virginia teaches a six day class on how to be a changemaker in the federal government. She trains public servants on design thinking and other innovation methods to better serve their customers.

Virgina has an extensive network of people and organizations throughout the country, and has served on many boards, advisory groups, and commissions. Her consulting work includes facilitation, strategic planning, meeting and event design, civic engagement, collaborative processes, and large scale system change.

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